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Ukraine high court dismisses legal challenge to parliamentary election results

[JURIST] The High Administrative Court of Ukraine Thursday validated the results of the Sept. 30 parliamentary election [JURIST report] after dismissing a legal challenge by the Communist Party of Ukraine [party website, in Ukrainian] contending the vote was invalid due to alleged violations associated with Ukrainians voting abroad. The coalition [press release] of President Viktor Yuschenko's Our Ukraine-People's Self-Defense Bloc [party website in Ukrainian] and former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko's Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc [party website, in Ukrainian] won 228 seats in the 450-member Verkhovna Rada [official website, in Ukrainian], while the opposition Party of Regions [party website, in Ukrainian], led by Yuschenko's long-time rival Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych [BBC profile], won 175 seats. AP has more.

The court's decision could help settle tensions in the Ukraine, which has been engulfed in political turmoil in recent months. A constitutional crisis erupted in April when Yushchenko issued a degree dissolving parliament [JURIST report]. Yanukovych and leaders of the Ukrainian parliament filed a legal challenge before the Constitutional Court of Ukraine [official website; JURIST news archive]. Yushchenko subsequently dismissed three Constitutional Court judges for alleged oath and ethnics violations [JURIST report], and appointed replacement judges [JURIST report] without consulting either Yanukovych or the Justice Ministry. In May, Yushchenko sought a lower court order to block the Constitutional Court from ruling on his April 2 decree following his rejection of the Constitutional Court's authority [JURIST reports].

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